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Everyone Loves Home Page Sliders

They’re cool and big sites use them so they must be a smart use of your website real estate. But are they?

Yeah man, clients love them. So hey, I create them too… only after smashing my head on my desk one too many times after failing to convince people they DO NOT WORK.

Whoa… a little dizzy… sorry, that sentence transported me to a bad place… Ok I’m back now 🙂

Sometimes called a Carousel, the Slider is one of the most requested feature by small businesses and non-profits. But do they benefit your organization? They have been around for a long time. The data is in.

They lead to a dead end.

1% precent of visitors will click on the first slide. Less than one percent will click on a following slide. To put that into perspective: 1 out of every 100 visitors will click thru. That’s it.

That’s a lot of home page real estate to give to a dead end.

The Break Down

First, what’s the purpose of a slider, the goal?

At first glance is might seem like a good idea. The prime real estate on your site is above the fold. That’s the part people see without needing to scroll. You’re limited.

A slider allows you to have more content in less space. Hmm… sounds good to me. But what good is something that gets 1 click in 100 visits?

The data

Some very smart people have analyzed the data. The only conclusion: Don’t waste your time.

Erik Runyon – Technical Director and a web developer for Marketing Communications at the University of Notre Dame studied how users interact with Sliders over a 4 month period in 2013. His results:

Approximately 1% of visitors click on a feature. There was a total of 28,928 clicks on features for this time period

There is a lot more data analysis in his report, click thru if your interested

ConversionXL is a website that focuses on Conversion Data has a good run down that shows, pretty conclusively, that Sliders don’t work.

The worst part

Sliders use screen real estate. Your home page has limited space above the fold for useful content for your visitors. Think of it as getting Boardwalk and Park Place in Monopoly. It’s gold. The only difference is you don’t need luck to get it. You already own it.

If you’re sufficiently depressed and don;t know what to do, hit me up in the comments or use my private channel.

If not, probably best to add another slide to you home page. 😛

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Chris Jones

Is a Small Business secret weapon in Cleveland, Ohio. A Wordpress Ronin and IT Jedi. He's behind the scenes at many Small Businesses and Non-Profits.

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